: You're not an Ayn Rand fan, are you? She turned 'check your premises' into a cliche by 1960...
Perhaps because she was the only one who consistently stripped the decorative rheotoric of collectivists down to the skeleton; the premises.
: : When you say "...people doing some of each of the work necessary to sustain the people so everyone can develop as a human being to the utmost of his and her capacity," you are, in essence saying that everyone has the obligation to contribute their labor to ease the labor of others so that those people can "develop as a human being..."
: Are you advocating instead the strict social division of labor that we presently have in capitalist society? (My full argument against that is in this post.)
The only type of rule I am advocating is the rule of objective law. Minority rule is just as bad as majority rule.
: The problem with that is a political one. If we continue to ration education so only a minority will have the skills necessary to manage the affairs of industry and state, then we perpetuate minority rule. If you wish to get behind minority rule...
Ration education? Since when was using your earned money to buy a service rationing? When you go tot he store to buy some milk is it being rationed to you? No? Then quit your semantical acrobatics. No one has the obligation to teach you anything. You do not have a right to education. Being educated is a service that you pay for (or at least should..however, I am not going to get into privitization of education). You get what you pay for. Just like any other service. You can spend the big bucks for a top notch education or you can get a mediocre one. The choice is yours.
: : Not only do you put the "collective" (group, society, etc..[it's all the same to me]) above the individual, you also stamp out the individual's freedom of choice and natural rights.
: Of course, the 'collective' is more important than the individual. Isn't that the underlying assumption of democracy?
I do not advocate pure democracy. It is merely facism by the majority.
: You are not Robinson Crusoe, my friend!
: You---and I---are already in a 'collective'!
The nature of a 'collective' requires the subordination of ones individuality to it. American society is not a collective. All you have to do is obey the laws and you are free to act as you will.
: The Industrial Revolution has interconnected everyone's labor through most of the world. No one labors or produces according to personal need (except starving peasants). We are all alienated from our needs by the vast commodity market and its labyrinthian modes of production and exchange. We must participate in this 'collective' in order to get what we need to survive.
No. You can go live on a self-sustaining farm and not have to trade with the outside world or participate in the global economy. That is your choice. The benefits, however, associated with the specialization of labor is that we are able to do one task more efficiently and trade goods for other goods. Value for value. This allows us to create wealth and raise are standard of living. Look around your house or appartment. Can you manufacture (as well as invent) everything you see around you? I am sure you can answer that question fairly easily.
: Communists propose that this ownership (of all the means of production) become owned by the majority (those who actually do the work).
: Choose your side.
I choose not to enslave anyone. I will not advocate enslavement of the minority by the majority nor vice versa. You are imposing a false dichotomy (another Randian cliche), or if you prefer (right from the "Logic in Philosophy" textbook) a false dilemna. In this case I choose neither P nor Q. QED.
Now you choose. To enslave or not to enslave?